Odin sits atop a wooden fence, gazing out across the plains from the hills above. The fence he sits upon rocks back and forth with the shifting of his weight, the wood being water logged from the winter, the nails imbedded inside them coated with a thick layer of rust. He sits and he watches, the sun rising over the mountains in the Far East. Puffs of smoke rise around his upper body from a long stemmed pipe protruding from his mouth. The smoke does not dissipate quickly in the morning air, it gathers in a pocket underneath the brim of Odin’s thick leather hat. He notices two birds flying together off near the mountains of the east, reaching closer to the village, the sunlight trailing behind them. He smiles as he recognizes the birds, his two ravens, and takes another deep inhale from his pipe, then slowly releases it from his nose. His smile disappears, for he realizes that the birds fly fast, almost with urgency. They reach him, swooping down to land gracefully on each of his shoulders. They lean closer to his ears, whisper to him, tell him tales of their journey, in a language only he can understand. His expression grows deeper, anger rising in his eyes, a shade of pink beginning to flow into his cheeks. Troubled news they bring him, sadness gathered from the lost ones. He turns his head around and sees one of his boys’ chopping and stacking wood behind him. With his shirt off, Odin can see sweat dripping down his chest, the muscles in his arms gaining strength with each swing of the ax.
“Thor” Odin calls.
“Yes Father?” Thor replies as he gathers the wood in his arms.
“Huginn and Muninn are back, feed them, then tend to the wood after”
Thor drops his armful into his growing pile of chopped pieces and begins to walk up the hill towards the cabin.
“Follow him” Odin whispers to the ravens. They lift off from their perch and glide towards the boy, circling around him.
Odin turns back to the plain, relighting the pipe that had died. A red hue is in the clouds near the sun, a bad night has past, let the day bring better fortune. Odin ponders.